Imatges de pÓgina

this formidable auxiliary to his advice, hastened to the palace, where it produced instant alarm, and the order was given to prepare for the voyage to the Brazils. But the national spirit was not yet exorcised from those fluctuating and somnolent councils. The French were not come, the palace was not fired, nor Lisbon paying a forced loan to Napoleon's Field-Marshal; and satisfied with this, the preparations paused again. Napoleon's avidity was the notorious cause of his final ruin. But we must have a deeper knowledge of the history of his vivid and triumphant career, to know how often he who overreached all others overreached himself; how often he marred his own successes by furious rashness and violent cupidity, and how keenly he paid the penalty of grasping at all things, with a contempt alike of the common decorums even of triumph, and an insulting confidence in his own fortune. He would have been master of Portugal and its monarch, if he had kept every soldier of France, for a year to come, a hundred miles from its frontier. He threw his troops into the country, and from that moment it was his no longer; he seized the capital, and found that the only result was the escape of the King.

At length the news was brought that the enemy were not only in Portugal, but hurrying on at full speed; and that the next twenty-four hours would see Junot in Lisbon. The court were now fully roused at last. Orders were given for conveying the royal family, the court, and all their property, on board the fleet in the Tagus. On the 29th of November 1807 the embarkation was effected, with all the tumult, loss, and misery that belong to excessive haste and a fugitive throne. But it was effected; another day would have made the difference to the King of Portugal between sovereignty and a dungeon. The French dragoons arrived while the fleet were still with in the Tagus, and the last look of the King shewed him the French flag waving on the hills above Lisbon. But he was escorted by the British fleet; and Junot, outrageously disappointed, was forced to be content with having driven a dynasty from the Old World to the New.

On the 17th of January the first intelligence was brought to Rio de Janeiro that the King and royal family had left Europe, and were at hand. The Brazilians were delighted with the prospect. They saw in this arrival the commencement of freedom of trade, of general opulence, of public improvements, and, above all, the high gratification of their pride in becoming a kingdom. From the first report of the good news, the whole sea-coast was in a state of excitement bordering on frenzy. Every hand was busy in preparation, every eye was turned to the telegraph which was to announce the first symptom of the royal fleet. on the horizon; houses were furnished for the illustrious guests, palaces were cleared of the murkiness of a century; the masters of such mansions as were likely to be required for the accommodation of the court, were called on to surrender them, which they are said to have done without a murmur. Such was the eager loyalty of the time; all Brazil was in a ferment with anxiety, expectation, and rejoicing, that at last they were to see their monarch among them.

The royal squadron followed the intelligence in a few days. Its passage had been rapid, and on the 17th of January 1808, it was signalled as off the coast. But the public disappointment was proportionably great, on learning that this arrival was confined to a single ship, containing some of the ladies of the court. The fleet had been dispersed in a storm a month before; and as the dispersion was complete, fears began to be entertained for the safety of the King. But the Brazilians were resolved to have a fête at all risks. The day on which this single vessel appeared was the feast-day of St Sebastian, the usual illumination of one day was prolonged to three, and at the same time the churches rang with supplications and ceremonies for the royal safety. This suspense continued an entire month. At its close the public fears were appeased by an express from Bahia, announcing that the fleet had reached that port in safety, and all was exultation once


The Sovereign, whom I have hitherto called King, was nominally

but Prince Regent until the year 1816, his mother, the Queen Donna Maria, dying in that year, and the Prince even then deferring the proclamation of his accession to the throne till the year of mourning was at a close. He arrived in his South American empire evidently willing to conciliate the people. His first act in landing at Bahia was to issue a decree worthy of a King. It was a declaration freeing the Brazils from all the fetters of the exclusive Portuguese system, and opening to them the commerce of all nations. The decree was received with universal rejoicing. The Regent then re-embarked for Rio de Janeiro, to the great sorrow of the Bahians. There he arrived on the 7th of March 1808, and was received with all the plaudits and honours that could be heaped on a popular monarch by a grateful and zealous people. The arrival of the court was a matter of eminent importance to the prosperity of Rio; it brought a conflux of the Portuguese nobility, who, of course, quickened expenditure in every direction; the court festivities not only enlivened the people, but excited their industry; foreigners began to visit the port, and before the expiration of a few months, several opulent and active foreign establishments were formed in the capital. The government seconded those favourable incidents with praiseworthy assiduity. Early in the same year Dom John proclaimed the right of every Brazilian to exercise trade, profession, and pursuit, according to his free will. The old restrictions which the jealousy of the parent state had, for nearly three centuries, laid upon the activity of this great province, were thus totally abolished. In the lan guage of the decree, "The government, desirous of increasing the wealth and prosperity of the Brazilian people by manufactures, agriculture, and arts, and thus increasing the number of productive hands, and diminishing the amount of that vice and misery which result from idleness and poverty, have now fully revoked every prohibition which still exists, and hereby encourage and invite all faithful Brazilians to engage in every kind of manufacture to which they are inclined, on a large

or limited scale, without reservation or exception." The next step was one of extraordinary daring for Portuguese legislation. It was the establishment of a newspaper. The fortyfirst birthday of the Prince Regent was made memorable in all the future records of Brazilian literature by the appearance of a royal gazette, published at a royal printing office! The spirit spread, and in a short period newspapers were propagated throughout the entire country.

The government, encouraged by the popularity with which its new measures were hailed on all sides, now pursued its manly and wise progress with double activity. It had actually to lay the foundations of the whole system of public prosperity, for hitherto this magnificent territory had known nothing of civilized rule but its monopolies, privations, and oppressions. The coarsest manufacture had been forbidden; the attempt to print a page of any thing, much more a newspaper page, would have sentenced the unlucky innovator to the mines. But now all the privileges of rational freedom, which amount, in their highest and happiest state, simply to the permission to every man to follow the bent of his own abilities without injury to others, and with protection in the fruits of his industry, were accorded to the population. A national bank was next formed, an essential expedient to quicken and direct the national industry. A royal treasury was then established, with a council of finance to regulate the public expenditure. Then followed royal schools of medicine, lazarettoes, royal powder manufactories, commissions of justice, ordinances for the Indians, &c. Vaccination was introduced soon after, a great blessing in a country where the small-pox still amounts to a frightful pestilence. In the rear of those important and necessary provisions followed the arts of enjoyment. In 1813 the Theatre of St John, so called in compliment to the Prince, was opened on the birthday of his son Dom Pedro. The higher donative of a public Library was given in the next year to Rio. The royal library having been saved from the grasp of the French, and conveyed with the fleet, it was now put under

the care of two learned Portuguese, and opened to the public. A new Treasury and Mint were built. Foreigners were invited to reside in the cities. Indian villages were raised. And the whole fabric of constitution al and patriotic activity was consummated by a royal decree of the 16th of November 1815, declaring Brazil to be elevated to the dignity of a kingdom; thenceforth to form with the European dominions of the monarch, the "United Kingdoms of Portugal, Algarves, and Brazil." The proclamation was received with a transport of national joy. All the towns were illuminated. Deputations and addresses poured in upon the palace, thanksgivings were offered up in all the churches, and in the midst of the tumult of festivity and gratitude the national constitution was born. On the 5th of January 1818, the Prince Regent, Dom John, was proclaimed and crowned first King of Brazil, or, in the ancient phrase of the Portuguese constitutions,"Royal, royal, royal, the very high and powerful Senhor, King Dom John the Sixth, our Lord."

the voyage of Æneas with his own. The fleet had put to sea in too much haste to provide the due accommodations for its multitude of passengers. Among other things, the stock of royal linen ran low, and the young Prince landed in shirts made of the sheets of his own bed. On the death of his tutor, which occurred at an early period after his arrival, the young Prince considered his education complete, and thenceforth pursued knowledge in his own way. He had a natural dexterity of hand, and became a turner, made a billiard table, a model of a man-of-war, and other ingenious things. He became a first-rate billiard player, and, by a better application of his tastes, an excellent musician, a performer on several instruments, and a clever musical composer. His feebleness of frame had now disappeared, and he exhibited himself as a capital horseman, a daring rider through the forests and precipices of his untamed country, and a charioteer of the highest breed of Jehu, distinguished for "driving furiously."

The time was now come when he must undergo the common fate of princes, and marry a wife of the ambassador's choosing. The bride selected was the Archduchess Leopoldina, daughter of the Emperor Francis the First, and sister of Maria Louisa, the Queen of Napoleon. The Marquis of Marialva had the honour to be the official lover and husband on the occasion. This marriage by proxy was celebrated on the 13th of May 1817; an auspicious day in the royal kalendar, as the anniversary of his father's birth, and his grandmother's accession. The Austrian princess was received at Rio with great popularity; her florid face and light hair looked captivating in the eyes of the Brazilians; and her honest and good-humoured manners, which gave at once curious evidence of the rusticity of even the highest German life, and of her genuine good-nature, made her instantly and universally popular.

But other thoughts than marrying and giving in marriage were soon to try the wisdom of the government, and the energy of the Prince. Oporto, the headquarters of liberalism in Portugal, raised a riot, which it called a

Dom Pedro, whose reverses, activity, eccentricity, and present enterprise, now occupy so considerable a space in the eyes of Europe, was born in Lisbon, on the 12th of October 1798, the second son of Dom John VI., and of Carlotta Joaquina, daughter of Charles IV. of Spain. By the early death of his brother, Dom Antonio, he became heir-presumptive to the throne. His frame was feeble, and he seemed to be of a sickly temperament. In the first alarm of the Portuguese court, it had been intended to send the young heir to Brazil, for the purpose of securing him from French hands. But the rapid advance of Junot's troops made a general movement necessary, and the Prince was embarked along with the court. He was at this time ten years old, had acquired some education, and exhibited considerable intelligence. His quickness of mind and body on the voyage gave favourable symptoms of his future career. He occupied himself much with the working and machinery of the ship; and, when not thus engaged, was often employed in reading Virgil at the foot of the mainmast, comparing

national movement, and constructed a Jacobin theory, which it called a constitution. On the arrival of the intelligence in Rio, two parties were formed;-a party for change, at the head of which was the Prince; and a party for keeping things in their old position, at the head of which were the ministers and the King. The Prince was speedily ejected from the Council of State; but this affront he was not disposed to bear meekly. He rushed into the Council Chamber, attacked the ministers in an indignant harangue, and having threatened them with the vengeance of a deceived people, and an angry posterity, rushed out again. The old King was an honest and harmless man, but he was not born a hero. This explosion of his son's politics terrified him, and the next act of his Council was to promise the Brazilians a constitution, accompanied by the wiser expedient of sending his too energetic son to talk over the subject with the philosophers of Oporto.

ade were in the habit of treating the Brazilians with consummate scorn. The native troops shared the contumely; and it was even carried so far, that they demanded that every Brazilian above the rank of captain should be dismissed, and his commission given to a Portuguese! As they now spread through the streets, with arms in their hands, and ready for any excess, the populace were rapidly wrought into equal irritation; and to avoid a general massacre, the Council hurried together.

The man of the south always lives in a state of conspiracy; and it is next to impossible to discover how far the most striking catastrophes are due to the course of things, or to private treason. The Brazilian is the genuine descendant of the Portuguese. While the Council were trembling at the prospect of being called on to perform their promise, and the Prince was probably contemplating with equal dislike a voyage across the Atlantic, which was palpably but a contrivance to expel him from the seat of government for the time, on the 25th of February 1821, the capital was thrown into sudden alarm by an insurrection of the troops. A brigade of Portuguese infantry, and guns, which had been brought to the Brazils four years before, for the purpose of suppressing the insurrectionary movements at Pernambuco, and had since been suffered to idle away its time in the capital, had taken up arms, and was proceeding to take the law into its own hands. Robbery and the new constitution were the stimulants, and these legislators proceeded to define the rights of liberty and property bayonet in hand. All soldiers, but the British, consider themselves as the supreme race of the nation; and the Portuguese brig

The decisions of men in a hurry are always foolish, and the Council established the maxim. They offered to concede every thing to any body, public or private, that would ask any thing. The Prince left them no opportunity to retrace their steps. Riding to the square where the insurgent troops were drawn up, he first informed them of the King's submission, and then arranged a deputation of the soldiers and populace to wait upon himself, and demand the dismissal of the ministers, and the proclamation of the new form of government. Armed with the will of the populace, he returned to the King, and, having obtained all that was requisite there, appeared at a balcony in the square, with the list of the new ministry in his hand. He then swore as follows to the insurgents :-" I swear, in the name of the King, my father and lord, veneration and respect for our holy religion, and to observe, keep, and support for ever, the constitution, as it is established by the Cortes in Portugal." This triumph of liberty by the pike and musket was, of course, hailed with prodigious acclamations. The next demand was, that the old King should appear before his loving people. The King dared not refuse, and he got into his carriage to visit the square where the troops were still drawn up. But another specimen of popular ardour was still to teach him the spirit of the time. The mob stopped the carriage, and, whether for the purpose of doing him peculiar honour, or of simply indulging their newly-discovered faculty of doing what they pleased, they insisted on drawing the vehicle. The old King, in the midst of the contention, was evidently alarmed for his personal

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safety, and probably with no slight reason; he fell back in the carriage, and nearly fainted. In the language of the writer who has furnished those details, "the horrors of the French Revolution were before his eyes, and he expected that the fate of the unfortunate monarch, who resembled himself in irresolution and goodness of heart, would be his own." This grand revolution was rounded with an opera! Such are the weighty movements of foreign freedom. The birth of the new constitution would have been nothing without a ballet. At this opera the populace commanded the King to make his appearance. But even the popular command cannot make the sick well. The old Monarch was in his bed, sick with his late alarm, sick with disgust, and probably to the full as sick of the liberty which, beginning by popular insurrection, threatened to close in royal massacre. From that bed we may date the resolution which so soon led him, by an extraordinary effort of decision, to abandon the Brazils to their orators and philosophers. On the 7th of March following, a proclamation appeared, announcing the royal determination to embark immediately for Portugal, there to hold the Cortes.

natural feeling began at last to make its way. A meeting of the electors of the deputies to the Cortes had been summoned to the Exchange, to take cognisance of a plan of the constitution proposed for the future direction of the Brazils, in the absence of the King. This assembly rapidly proceeded from the dull routine of discussing principles of government to the business that came home to men's hearts and bosoms, the departure of the Royal Family. It became at length a matter of discussion whether the money which the King was about to take with him should be suffered to go out of the country. One orator stated that the King was about to carry off the funds of some of the charitable institutions; another moved that measures should be instantly adopted to prevent the sailing of the squadron until they were searched; and orders were actually sent to the forts commanding the bay to fire on any ship of the squadron which attempted to sail. It was clear that, if this spirit of oratory were allowed to spread its wings even so far as the next street, a rising of the populace would be the next thing, and the King and his ships would have put off their voyage together sine die. But though the national feeling was strong for detaining the King, there was a private and personal feeling, equally strong, for getting rid of him as fast as possible. And the distinction was, that the national feeling waited for a leader, and was therefore ineffective; while the personal feeling waited for nothing but the first opportunity of gaining its point. The debates of the assembly at the Exchange had awakened its jealousy, and a determination was adopted to give those embarrassing debaters an early lesson, which should teach them the hazard of impeding the will of their superiors. The sitting had been prolonged on this occasion till midnight, and the hall was still crowded, when the tramp of soldiery was heard, and a whole Portuguese regiment, without farther question or explanation, poured into the hall. To the astonishment and horror of every body, those miscreants instantly levelled their muskets, and began a regular fire upon the unarmed electors. A scene of

It is difficult to ascertain who was the chief director in those popular movements; but it seems a striking circumstance that the King's announcement of his thus leaving the Brazils to struggle for themselves, produced no tumult of any kind. Yet no measure was more likely to have roused the people to violence, or would have more unquestionably roused them a few months before. By the return of the royal family to Lisbon, the Brazils must become again a subordinate government,their deputies must attend the Portuguese Cortes,-their country must lose the rank of the seat of the monarchy, and their capital the advantage of the large expenditure of the court and nobles. But the populace, hitherto so turbulent, were perfectly tranquil on the occasion. It was perfectly clear, that whoever had pulled the strings of the puppets before, now pulled them no longer, or were pleased to let the puppets remain in a state of quiescence. However, the

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